Burglary remains a serious crime in Maryland, and anyone arrested for illegally entering another person’s dwelling could face charges and a day in criminal court. Those found guilty may receive a harsh sentence, depending on the circumstances.
Burglary and criminal actions
First-degree burglary involves someone entering someone’s dwelling with the intention to commit a crime. Typically, people associate burglary with theft. In many instances, the assessment would be accurate. However, the motivation for breaking into a home or business does not always involve theft.
Per Maryland statutes, someone may face charges of first-degree burglary if the accused forcibly entered a dwelling with the intent to commit violence. So, someone with intentions to assault someone could deal with burglary charges.
Addressing first-degree burglary charges
A criminal defense strategy may involve questioning whether a defendant broke into a dwelling. The burglary charges could be unwarranted if the person had permission to enter. However, the accused may face other charges based on what occurred inside the property.
The unfortunate possibility exists that a defendant could face false accusations. An individual with a grudge or another self-serving reason may accuse someone of both burglary and a violent crime. Regardless, the evidence might point to the defendant’s innocence or at least reasonable doubt.
If found guilty, a defendant may face a maximum of 20 years in prison. Those found guilty of burglary in connection with a home invasion might face a 25-year sentence. As such, anyone concerned about losing a jury trial could explore options for plea bargaining. A plea bargain might lead to reduced charges and a potentially lighter sentence.